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University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Multistate Taxation

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign via Coursera


This course will examine state and local tax laws prevalent in the United States today. The course will consider the historical progression of state and local taxation, the power of states to tax (and the limitations on that power), and planning strategies for minimizing the impact of state and local taxation. Discussions will focus on income taxes, sales taxes, and property taxes.

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  • Module 1: An Introduction to Multistate Taxation
    • In this module, you will be introduced to your instructor, the course, and to multistate taxation in general. Specifically, you will learn about the most common types of taxes used by state and local governments, the limitations on a state's ability to tax, and the current revenue challenges facing state and local governments.
  • Module 2: Federal Limits on Multistate Taxation
    • In this module, we will discuss the limitations that the U.S. Constitution and Congress can place on a state's taxing power. Our discussion will primarily focus on the Due Process Clause and the Commerce Clause. We'll also take a closer look at the Commerce Clause's substantial nexus requirement.
  • Module 3: Sales and Use Taxes
    • In this module, we will discuss sales and use taxes, which are typically excise taxes imposed on retail transactions to the ultimate end-user of a product. We will also discuss some of the various exemptions from the retail sales tax that states offer. And, we will look at the current sales tax landscape after the U.S. Supreme Court's recent ruling in Wayfair v. South Dakota.
  • Module 4: Individual Income Taxes
    • In this module you will be introduced to how states tax income. We will discuss the history and development of state individual income taxes. We will then turn to how state's utilize the Internal Revenue Code as a head start for their own tax laws. Then we will learn about the two bases of state taxation, residency and source. And, how taxpayers may be eligible for a credit for taxes paid to other states.
  • Module 5: Corporate Income Taxes (Part I)
    • In this module we will be introduced to corporate state income taxes and their history. We will also learn about the most important piece of federal legislation regarding state income taxation, Public Law 86-272. Finally, we will walk through the typical corporate income tax formula used by states to compute state taxable income and tax.
  • Module 6: Corporate Income Taxes (Part II)
    • In this module we will discuss the general rules for allocation and apportionment. This includes differentiating between business (i.e., apportionable) and nonbusiness (i.e., allocable) income. We will also learn how to compute apportionment factors.
  • Module 7: Corporate Income Taxes (Part III)
    • In this module we will learn about the different filing return filing methods (separate, consolidated, and combined) used by states for multi-entity corporate taxpayers. As a part of that discussion, we will discuss the unitary business rule and the constitutional limitations on certain return filing methods. We will then turn to discussing specialized apportionment issues surrounding combined (unitary) tax filing methods.
  • Module 8: Property Taxes
    • In this module we will learn about property taxes. We will discuss the history and development of property taxes. How property taxes are computed. And, common state constitutional limitations on property taxes.

Taught by

Matthew Hutchens


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